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MOSI Gets $2 Million Grant from Florida Hospital

WUSF Public Media

Florida Hospital gave Tampa’s Museum of Science and Industry $2 million on Friday. Long-time CEO Wit Ostrenko, who announced his retirement plans earlier this year, accepted the multimillion dollar check from Florida Hospital West Florida Region President/CEO Mike Schultz. Also in attendance were various board members of both institutions, along with State Sen. John Legg and Hillsborough County Commissioner Al Higginbotham.

The grant will be used in part to bring MOSI’s IMAX Dome Theatre into the digital age, replacing its current 1570 mm film with a 3D projection system. MOSI’s Vice President of Growth Molly Demeulenaere said the updated theater “will allow us to offer more content and more content on a regular basis means more visitors.”

This donation came on the heels of a recent audit of MOSI, which revealed the institution is thousands of dollars in debt. Demeulenaere said that the final cost of the project has not yet been determined, and declined to comment on whether or not any of the money would go towards alleviating the museum’s debt.

Remaining money from the grant will fund MOSI’s STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) initiative, which is designed to get students interested in healthcare careers.

“As someone in the education field you’ve heard it said that it's all about the three 'R’s' but in this new millennium, it's really about the three 'P’s' and that’s play, purpose and passion. I couldn’t think of a better purpose and passion and play than here at MOSI to inspire our next young generation of leaders,” said Florida State Sen. John Legg.

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